5. Arts and cultural education
Last update: November, 2016
Arts and cultural education at school addresses three objectives:
- allows all pupils to constitute a rich and coherent personal culture throughout their school curriculum;
- develops and strengthen their artistic practice; and
- allows pupils to meet artists and see artworks, and to attend cultural institutions.
Arts and cultural education is par excellence the domain of cooperation between the Ministry of Culture and the Ministry of Education. Since the 1970s many schemes and plans were implemented to strengthen arts and cultural education during school and out-of-school, to develop artistic and cultural professional training as well as the educational mission of the cultural establishments. In 2000, the ministers of Culture and of Education launched a five-year plan for the development of arts and culture at school, called the Lang-Tasca Plan from the names of the ministers of Culture and Education. In 2005 this policy was revived, with in particular the installation of a High Council of the Arts and Cultural Education (Haut Conseil de l'éducation artistique et culturelle). In 2007 the authorities installed the pôles de ressources pour l'éducation artistique et culturelle (PRÉAC), that is poles of resources for the arts and cultural education. These bodies articulate their action around two dimensions:
- territorial dimension: each body coordinates the action of the stakeholders of arts and cultural education at regional level (regional centres of educational documentation, schools of education, cultural institutions, etc.); and
- thematic dimension: each body is specialised in a specific artistic and cultural domain (theatre, music, photo, heritage, archaeology, etc.).
In 2008, history of art was added to the compulsory curricula from primary school to high school. In 2012, the Minister of Culture Aurélie Filippetti launched a national consultation on arts and cultural education that resulted in the report Bouët-Desplechin Pour un accès de tous les jeunes à l'art et à la culture : http://www.culturecommunication.gouv.fr/content/download/60251/463625/version/2/file/Consultation+nationale+EAC.pdf ). The 26 proposals from this report have several objectives:
- Reinforce territorial governance and set up efficient operational instruments for territorial policies
- Update the doctrine of arts and cultural education
- Give more initiative and responsibility to stakeholders and users: youth, teachers, parents and artists
- Foster the professional training of the main stakeholders
- Promote universities as cultural infrastructures
- Create spaces for exchange between the stakeholders of arts and cultural education
Since 2014, a reform of the national school time organisation introduced more extracurricular activities, including cultural activities.
Arts education at school is the responsibility of the Minister of Education, which supervises art teaching and schemes. The out-of-school activities are mainly supervised by the territorial authorities, which cooperate to animate and support the arts academies and schools (music, dance, theatre), with the help of the State services (expertise and educational inspection, interventions of professionals and artists, etc.)
In the regions and départements, local schemes for arts and cultural education assess resources and organise the cooperation between the services of the Ministries of Culture (Regional Directorates) and Education (Local Education Authorities), and the territorial authorities (municipalities, départements, regions).
Last update: November, 2016
Common and compulsory teaching
Arts and cultural education is based on the following system:
- visual arts and music education at primary school (école élémentaire) ( 6-11 years);
- visual arts and music education at secondary school (collège) (11-15 years);
- exploration courses, optional courses and speciality courses in various artistic domains at high school (lycée) (15-18 years); and
- history of art from primary school to high school.
Additional cultural and artistic activities
Many specific actions and schemes can be set up to complete compulsory courses: classes with artistic and cultural projects (classes à projet artistique et culturel), art workshops, artists' residences, heritage classes (classes du patrimoine), etc. In some primary and secondary schools, there are classes with specific schedules to allow pupils to strengthen art education in music, dance or theatre: classes à horaires aménagés. All these schemes have precise specifications that are defined nationally.
In the field of education on film, for about twenty years now the schemes École et cinéma, Collège au cinéma et Lycéens au cinéma (School and cinema, Secondary school and cinema and High school pupils and cinema) have allowed pupils to discover patrimonial and contemporary movies, chosen with the CNC (National Centre of Cinema) and with partner cinema theatres. The schemes include discussion and analysis in class of the movie. In 2010-2011, these three schemes benefited about one and a half million pupils.
Schools also develop partnerships with cultural institutions, in close collaboration with departments of the Ministry of Culture, at national and local levels. These "twinnings" allow pupils to experience works of heritage and creation. At local level, each school development plan (projet d'établissement) must contain an artistic and cultural strand. In every high school, a culture referee insures coherence, follow-up and implementation of this cultural strand.
An Internet platform was created in October, 2010 and then widened in March, 2012 under the name of Culture-lycée (http://www.culturelycee.fr), in partnership with France Télévisions and the National Centre of Educational Documentation. This platform allows high school pupils to organise sessions on projection and gives them access to about one hundred and fifty masterworks of film heritage in original version. About sixty dance, music, opera, theatre and visual arts works are also available in partnership with the National Opera of Paris, Arte, the National Audiovisual Institute and the Union of National Museums.
Last update: November, 2016
The higher arts and culture education is characterised by its institutional diversity, and is conducted by different private and public institutions and establishments. The Ministry of Culture is responsible for education in the fields of architecture, heritage, visual arts, performing arts, cinema and broadcasting. In certain domains, such as archaeology, books or arts management and administration for example, courses are held at universities. Private schools run courses in graphic arts, interior design, technical occupations of the performing arts, cinema and broadcasting, press, video games and multimedia.
In 2009, more than 600 establishments run higher education curricula in visual arts, theatre, dance, music, cinema, heritage, archaeology or architecture, 80 establishments more than in 1999 (+ 15.1%). 112 000 students are registered on these courses: 35.7% are registered in an establishment that is supervised by the Ministry of Higher Education and Research, 23.2% by the Ministry of Culture and 18.4% by the Ministry of Education. The share of students registered in private institutions is higher in arts and cultural education (28.6%) than in the whole of higher education (17.3%).
In 2010-2011, the arts and cultural superior training supported by the Ministry of Culture operates in 125 institutions, in the following domains: visual arts, performing arts, architecture and landscape, heritage, cinema and broadcasting. These institutions welcome 34 000 students, nearly half of whom are registered in the schools of architecture and landscape, and nearly a third follow courses in the visual arts. Women represent 59% of the registered students. Most of the curricula and diplomas are compatible with the three-cycle framework of qualifications of the European Higher Education Area, in France: Licence-Master-Doctorat. In 2014, the occupational integration rate was good: 86 % of the graduates are employed three year after their graduation, which represents a slightly higher share than the whole graduates from higher education.
In 2009, 1.7% of the students registered at university follow an arts or cultural training course, that is 38 500 students. While the number of universities proposing at least one of these courses increased from 52 to 62 between 1999 and 2009, that is a 19.2% increase, the number of students decreased by 22.9%. In 2008, the Art+Université+Culture association lists about 300 artistic and cultural curricula at university level, leading to degree and master diplomas in the fields of fine arts, visual arts and decorative arts, performing arts and music, cinema, audiovisual, and broadcasting, arts and culture management and administration, history of art, archaeology and heritage. University education is distributed on the whole territory: in 2009, the Parisian universities served 24.4% of the students on these curricula.
Last update: November, 2016
The out-of-school arts and cultural education is mainly conducted within the framework of public academies (conservatoires) that are subsidised by territorial authorities, in partnership with the State departments, mainly the Ministry of Culture, which is in charge of the educational supervision of these establishments. The conservatoires run music courses, while many also run courses in dance and drama. The status of these academies can be diverse. Since the law of decentralisation of 1 August 2004, the State wished to harmonise the classification of the different establishments, according to their audiences and their activities. In 2013 there are:
- 298 municipal or intermunicipal academies (conservatoires à rayonnement communal / intercommunal, CRC or CRI);
- 110 county academies (conservatoires à rayonnement départemental, CRD); and
- 43 regional academies (conservatoires à rayonnement régional CRR).
Curricula are organised in three cycles that are validated by final exams, which represent 8 to 14 years of studies:
- the first two cycles, in CRC, CRD, or CRR, constitute the phases of initiation and development;
- third cycles, in CRD or CRR, can be directed either to the continuation of amateur practice, or towards the preparation of diplomas for professional qualifications, opening the way to artistic higher education; and
- an early-learning / discovery cycle, for the youngest, is also sometimes available.
In 2008-2009, the average enrolment was 1 162 pupils per establishment:
- all CRRs have more than 1 000 pupils; and
- most of the CRDs have between 500 and 1 500 pupils.
Music is the most popular discipline chosen by pupils (86%), nevertheless dance and dramatic art are progressing in a significant way (respectively +7% and +20% since the previous survey in 2006-2007). More than 9 000 professors, in all disciplines, teach in these classified establishments. Territorial authorities contribute to 79% of their financing.
Other training (visual arts, writing, broadcasting, etc.) is less significant. There are however many artistic schools and academies in various domains, some financed by public authorities and some private: associative schools, private schools (like for example the Yamaha schools), religious music schools, visual art schools, jazz schools... The French Federation of music, choreography and theatre education (Fédération française de l'enseignement musical, chorégraphique et théâtral), gathers for example more than 1 200 academies of music, dance, theatre and visual art, with approximately 21 000 professors and 410 000 pupils. The National Federation of jazz and contemporary music schools (Fédération nationale des écoles d'influence jazz et des musiques actuelles) gathers more than 35 training institutions, with more than 9 000 pupils, trainees or students and more than 600 artists-teachers.
Last update: November, 2016
Besides, about 175 public and private institutions propose, in 2010-2011, superior technical diplomas in many specialities of applied and decorative arts and crafts: interior design, decorative arts, ceramic arts and textiles, graphic arts and broadcasting technologies, etc.